Jaishankar to attend Quad meet in Australia on Feb 11

Minister of External Affairs, Dr S. Jaishankar will be on an official visit to Australia and Philippines from February 10 to February 15.

The EAM will participate in the 4th Quad Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on February 11 in Melbourne, along with the Foreign Ministers of Australia, Japan and the United States. The EAM would also be on a bilateral visit to the Philippines from 13-15 February. The visit is expected to give further momentum to bilateral relations with our key partners in the Indo-Pacific, Australia, and the Philippines, which is also a leading member of the ASEAN, said the Ministry of External Affairs.

On the invitation of his Australian counterpart Marise Payne, the External Affairs Minister will be visiting Australia on 10-13 February. This will be Jaishankar’s first visit as External Affairs Minister to Australia. It would be the first high level visit to Australia after the opening of its borders which were closed following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, informed the Ministry of External Affairs.

It will be an opportunity for the Ministers to follow up on their virtual meeting held in February 2021 and will exchange views on regional strategic issues given their shared vision of a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region. The Ministers will review ongoing Quad cooperation and build on the positive and constructive agenda announced by the leaders at the two Summits in 2021, to address contemporary challenges such as the COVID pandemic, supply chains, critical technologies, climate change, infrastructure etc, said the ministry statement.

The EAM and the Australian Foreign Minister will co-chair the 12th Foreign Ministers’ Framework Dialogue on February 12. The Ministers will review the progress of the India-Australia Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and discuss bilateral, multilateral and regional issues of mutual interest.

On the same day, EAM will co-chair the inaugural Foreign Ministers’ Cyber Framework Dialogue (FMCFD) with Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne. The Ministers will assess the progress made towards implementation of the India-Australia Framework Arrangement on Cyber and Cyber-Enabled Critical Technology Cooperation and the subsidiary Plan of Action which they signed in June 2020 on the sidelines of the Virtual Leaders’ Summit held between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Jaishankar is also likely to meet with Australian political leaders, academics and businessmen, as well as the Indian diaspora and students.

Jaishankar would also be on a bilateral visit to the Philippines from 13-15 February. He will hold talks with his counterpart, Teodoro L. Locsin Jr, Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the Philippines. This will be his first visit to the Philippines as External Affairs Minister.

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